Reading: New Obsession: The Bullet Journal

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New Obsession: The Bullet Journal

This handwritten journal/to-do list is keeping me accountable every day

By Lesley Jane Seymour

Bullet journal is DIY
Photo by Estee Janssens for unsplash

I’ve gone so deeply digital with my writing that when a professor says in class, “Take out your pen and paper,” I literally have to ask the twentysomething next to me to share (I’m getting my masters in sustainability management)! Enter a friend who told me about the Bullet Journal: a kind of DIY planner/motivator/scrapbook that captures every thought and “To Do” list in one portable place (instead of all those stickies I have flying around that I tend to lose). At first, I laughed: an old diary?

But I’ve been working with it since the first of the year and I’m finding that writing things down and crossing them off on paper holds me weirdly accountable. I can now see when things are lagging and dispose of tasks that are unimportant. It also helps to brain dump every anxiety-provoking thought at the end of the day so I don’t wake up to worry about buying more cat food at 3:00 am.

Most importantly,  ideas don’t get lost or vanish inside my computer or in the cloud like they do when they are only written down digitally.

I’m using good old-fashioned stickers and learning calligraphy (which is way harder as a lefty), and I find decorating the journal (a real no-no for the bullet purists) to be meditative and joyful! What a way to reinvent journaling and planning. Though there are premade bullet journals for sale, you can take any old journal you have hanging around and follow the instructions here to get it started.

Have fun and let me know how you like it.

P.S. I was inspired to write this piece after I mentioned the Bullet Journal in a previous Letter from Lesley and got such an enormous response.

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